Complicated Shadows

Complicated Shadows

The Life and Music of Elvis Costello

Book - 2004
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Elvis Costello is undoubtedly one of the most important and challenging musicians of the last thirty years. Complicated Shadows paints a detailed portrait of an intensely private, complex, and creatively restless individual. It draws on a wealth of new research, including exclusive interviews with people from all stages of Costello's life and career: classmates, friends, members of his early bands, former lovers, members of the Attractions, producers, and various collaborators. Complicated Shadows unearths many previously unknown details about Costello's childhood in London and Liverpool and his early years as a struggling musician, as well as his turbulent personal life. It also reveals the circumstances surrounding his marriages to ex-Pogues bassist Cait O'Riordan and jazz singer Diana Krall, and the bitter breakup of his longtime backing band, the Attractions. Complicated Shadows contains a full examination and analysis of the entirety of Costello's vast and varied musical output, both in the studio and on the stage.
Publisher: Edinburgh : Canongate, 2004.
ISBN: 9781841957968
Characteristics: ix, 342 p., [32] p. of plates :,ill. ;,24 cm.


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Oct 19, 2010

What is reallly amazing about this book is just that it tells the story of the scope and breadth of what Elvis Costello has done as an recording artist. I’m not aware of anyone else ever who has such a varied body of work in terms of musical styles.

I find the author of this book to be pretty objective about Costello’s music, both recorded and live. It’s mostly about the music, and his personal life usually just enters into the story when it has a bearing on the music. And the book is objective when it comes to his life overall. No sugar-coating.

I enjoyed this a lot but if you are not a Costello fan to at least some degree, you might find this a bit much.

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